Automotive legislation focusses only on tailpipe emissions, ignoring the energy consumed during vehicle manufacture. But the production of every kilogram of primary aluminium generates 10 kg of CO2. Even with the favourable assumption of infinite recycling, the production of an aluminium cylinder block consumes 1.8 to 3.7 times more energy than the production of a cast iron cylinder block. Can the up-front energy burden of aluminium be recovered during the lifetime of the vehicle? Recent research says no.
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